Helping in the Age of Pandemic

The goodness of giving gives birth to love

I've always loved sewing. In 1987, when I graduated from elementary school, I received a gift from my parents, at my request: a Bagat-Danica sewing machine. As my mom and everyone else in the house didn’t know how to sew, and I didn't have time to attend the Bagat course, during the summer break I learned from a friend who was a tailor how to make a cake and how to sew on a machine. Time passed and my hobby grew and during high school I would sew pants, dresses, coats and shirts for friends, my younger brother and myself. All in my spare time and of course - free of charge.

Since then, I have been sewing whenever I needed a break, especially since I got my daughters and my brother got 4 daughters. When they were little, my hobby was very useful because there weren't many stores back then and we didn't have great financial resources either. The idea of sewing masks came about because we are currently in a Coronavirus pandemic, which is why there aren't enough masks in pharmacies for everyone. That's why I decided to sew them myself. 

My machine is old, and despite being repaired many times, it has worked sporadically. However, it wouldn’t even move that day! I came up with the idea of contacting my classmates in a Viber group and asking them if anyone had a sewing machine. The group consists of those who live in and around Krusevac, but also those who live in other cities and villages in Serbia. 

With my friends and companions whom I spent 8 years with in elementary school "Vuk Karadzic" in Krusevac, I hang out in the city once a month; together we go to the theater, to concerts and other events in the city.

We see and call each other much more often since our friend Braca had left us in May 2019. Somehow, Braca's departure reminded us and gathered around everything that is most valuable in life: peace, love, faith, kindness, understanding, a time to listen and to be listened to by someone, conversations, community, joy, and laughter, lots of laughter.We talk in the Viber group every day; some write more because they have more free time, some a little less, but the important thing is that we read the daily correspondence at bedtime and go to bed with a smile.

To my message if anyone had a machine, friend Viki immediately replied that she had one and that I could borrow it. I took the machine that was the same model as my first machine. My husband repaired it, replaced the parts, lubricated it, and my joy was as great as when my parents gave it to me in 1978.

As soon as the machine was repaired, I wrote in the Viber group that I wanted to sew as many masks as we all needed. For free of course! When I presented the idea to them, they all rejoiced and supported me. Together we collected the necessary material - canvas, thread, elastic and other material. Sewing material is not usually expensive, but now it is impossible to buy it anywhere, so their help and support was of great importance to me.

As an educator, it is logical for me to initiate such actions and to be personally engaged. In 5 days I sewed about 70 masks and all my friends were patient, kind and supportive towards me in the process. I organized my sewing time after my working time, from 8pm to 11pm every day. At times like this, I believe that when you give, your love and goodness grow. This has no price. As Dusko Radovic says: "There is so little love between people. Those who know how to love shouldn’t do anything else. ”

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